Another Legal Guide from Eric Robinson Solicitors MOTORING TOP TIPS TO HELP AVOID PROSECUTIONS REVEALED! THE SECRETS

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1 Another Legal Guide from Eric Robinson Solicitors MOTORING 46 TOP 10 TIPS TO HELP AVOID PROSECUTIONS THE SECRETS REVEALED!

2 You looked after my son really well. We were left fully informed as to what was going on, and thanks to your skill and expertise achieved the result we wanted. Provided reassurance and guidance at every stage of a stressful experience. You provided me with sound, honest advice whilst explaining the legal issues clearly. Without your expertise, knowledge, care, understanding and all your hard work which you put into the case, the outcome would not have been a favourable one. Eric Robinson were recommended to me when I was in trouble and everything looked very bleak indeed. I knew I was in safe hands from our first meeting. Everything was explained to me in words that I understood without any difficult legal jargon. I was so pleased and relieved when my case was over and I could get on with my life again.

3 1 Be aware of Speed Camera hotspots Every town and city has roads that have static speed cameras; you will probably know where these are in your local area. However, if you are visiting a location that is not familiar to you it is always worth checking where these cameras are. They are often listed on route planners or on the internet. Also, it is worth noting that the police often target the same roads with mobile speed traps as they tend to have their regular spots that they use. Local knowledge is the key here, but you should be familiar with the ones the police regularly use in your local town. It is advisable to stick to the speed limit at all times to avoid getting caught by any speed cameras. 2 Don t use mobile phones We are all aware that using a mobile phone is an offence, but much worse than that, it is a distraction that can cause accidents. Making or answering a call or even worse, texting, can prove to be fatal. However, just picking up your phone to see who a call or text was from is also an offence - even if you weren t going to take the call or reply to the text. If your action is seen by the police, you open yourself to prosecution with a fine and points on your licence. Pulling over to make or take a call is the answer, but park safely and for the avoidance of doubt, make sure you turn the engine off so it cannot be suggested by a police officer that you were driving. If your engine is still running you are not officially parked and it could still be suggested that you are in control of the vehicle. 3 Play safe - Don t drink any alcohol if you are driving People often think they know their alcohol limit. They think that if they only have one or two drinks that they will be under the drink drive limit and safe to drive. Rather than take this gamble, play it safe and don t drink any alcohol at all if you are driving. That way there is no guessing involved. It is not safe to assume that you would automatically be under the limit, it depends on body weight, how much you have eaten, the time of day, what you drank the day before, if you are tired, if you are on medication and how quickly your body processes alcohol plus many other variables. Your licence is too precious to gamble with. 1

4 ... 4 Double check that your automatic insurance renewal has been processed correctly It is common practice now for your insurance to renew automatically unless you call your provider and tell them not to. However, if for any reason your automatic insurance renewal isn t processed correctly, you leave yourself open, not only to prosecution, but also being sued by the other drivers if you have an accident - this problem is more frequent than you may think. There could be a problem with the bank or insurance company, or even quite simply the direct debit isn t processed. Although the insurance company are meant to advise you immediately if there is a problem, that doesn t always happen. Either way it is your responsibility to check all is well and to ensure that you have a certificate of insurance for the forthcoming year. 5 Don t drive after drinking a lot the night before How often after a heavy night out do you feel really hungover but still drive to work? It is quite probable that you will still be over the drink drive limit. If you have an accident or are just pulled over on a random police stop check you could be breathalysed and over the limit. The fines and disqualification are the same, notwithstanding the fact that it is the next day and you have slept inbetween. Whether you are actually over the limit will depend again on many factors, such as how much you had to drink and when you stopped drinking. There are gadgets on the market which allow you to take your own breath test to double check that you are ok to drive. However they can be unreliable, and if you need to take this test, the chances are that you shouldn t be driving. If in doubt, take public transport or get a lift it is much better than losing your licence. 6 Wear seat belts For most people, putting on a seatbelt is an automatic action as soon as you get in the car. This is obvious and sensible for your own safety. However, backseat passengers should also wear seatbelts and children should be properly restrained with car or booster seats. If you or a passenger is seen not wearing a seatbelt this can attract police attention and can leave you exposed to the police taking a keen interest in your car (and tyres, see point 7) potentially leading to further problems. 2

5 7 Check Tyre Treads every month Tyres can easily become worn without you noticing. It is a good idea to check them every pay day to make sure they are legal. Tyre tread for cars must be 1.6mm throughout - a continuous band in the centre ¾ of the tread around the entire circumference. Tyres must be fit for purpose, in that they must be properly fitted, no lumps or bumps and not have any cuts or tears over 25mm or 10% sectional width of the tyre. If you have any doubts at all take your car to a garage to have them examined. You do not have to carry a spare tyre, but if you do then it too must be legal. Your licence could be endorsed if your tyres aren t up to standard, and you ll be fined too. 8 Renew your Photo Driving Licence every 10 years It may be obvious that you have to update your photo driving licence if you change name or address. But not many people know that your photo driving licence expires every 10 years and you are required to update your photo every 10 years even if you are still at the same address. Failure to do so can lead to a fine of up to Be alert to Average Speed Camera especially on Motorway Road works Average speed cameras catch you if your average speed over a set distance is too high. These are commonly used on motorways where roadworks are taking place. You need to watch your speed carefully as it can sneak up and land you with a summons even though it often seems strange and frustrating slowing down to 40 or 50 mph on a motorway, especially if you are in a rush. But in the long run it s worth it, to avoid those points and the fine that goes with it. 10 If you get a request from the police to name who was driving on a given day, do so or you commit a separate offence If at any time you receive a letter from the police asking you to confirm who was driving your car on any given day, then you must do so. Not only could it be in your interests to do so, but failure makes you guilty of an offence, 3

6 ... leading to points on your licence. You must also send the form back within the time period or this can lead to prosecution as well. Furthermore, please don t be tempted into swapping points on your licence by asking your spouse to say they were driving, or by agreeing to say you were driving for someone else. This is a very serious offence of Conspiracy to Pervert the Course of Justice and can land you both in the Crown Court and ultimately prison for you both, even if you have no previous criminal record. Swapping details makes a bad situation a whole lot worse. Should the police wish to look into matters a little closer it is often easy to detect by looking at the image on the speed camera who the driver was. There have been a few high profile cases recently where people have got into more trouble by swapping points than they would have done by taking their points and fine in the first place. 4

7 BRONZE n Initial half hour interview 350 n Advice on Sentence range This is not available for n Attendance and Representation at Court Not Guilty pleas n Written Advice on Appeal SILVER n Initial interview up to one hour 600 n Explanation as to Law and Procedure GOLD MOTORING OFFENCES PRICING PACKAGES ALL PRICES INCL VAT n Interviewing witnesses as required n Telephone access to person dealing with case n Advice on Sentence range n Attendance and Representation at Court n Written Advice on Appeal n Initial interview up to one hour 990 n Explanation as to Law and Procedure n Interviewing witnesses as required n Further half hour interview if required n Direct access to person dealing with case n Advice on Sentence range n Attendance and Representation at Court, as many hearings as required n Written Advice on Appeal and further interview after case if required PLATINUM 1500 n Unlimited Initial interview n Explanation as to Law and Procedure n Interviewing witnesses as required n Scene inspection n Photographic evidence to be placed before the court n Further interviews as required n Direct access to person dealing with case telephone & n Advice on Sentence range n Attendance and Representation at Court, as many hearings as required n Representation at Court for Trial or final hearing by Junior Counsel if so required n Written Advice on Appeal and further interview after case if required 5

8 MOTORING 46 TOP 10 TIPS TO HELP AVOID PROSECUTIONS 359 Bitterne Road Bitterne Southampton SO18 1DN Tel: SOUTHAMPTON I CHANDLERS FORD I HEDGE END I HYTHE I BITTERNE I WINCHESTER

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